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The Opportunity Reader: Stories, Poetry, and…

The Opportunity Reader: Stories, Poetry, and Essays from the Urban…

by Dr. Sondra Kathryn Wilson

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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375753796, Paperback)

"Not alms, but opportunity," was the credo of the National Urban League, the civil rights organization that in 1923 began publishing the monthly magazine Opportunity: A Journal of Negro Life. Like its contemporary The Crisis (the NAACP's literary magazine), Opportunity, edited by sociologist Charles Johnson, offered invaluable exposure to many of the African American writers who defined the Harlem Renaissance. This anthology, expertly compiled by Sondra Kathyrn Wilson, contains some of the magazine's best short stories, essays, and poetry by authors such as Alain Locke, Arthur Schomburg, Dorothy West, and Langston Hughes. Zora Neale Hurston's "John Redding Goes to Sea"--a heroic and heartbreaking tale of a young man's desire to leave rural Florida to see the world--highlights her uncanny ability to re-create Negro Southern vernacular speech in print, while Afro-Caribbean writer Eric D. Walround's "The Stone Rebounds" is a witty reversal of race and class prejudice as seen through the eyes of a white socialite who travels uptown to Harlem's "Barrett Manor," a sprawling mansion where the highest members of the Negro elite barely tolerate his social intrusion. Opportunity ceased publication in 1949, but its belief that the dissemination and celebration of Afro-American art will contribute to improved race relations in America is as true today as it was during the magazine's heyday. --Eugene Holley Jr.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:49 -0400)

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